Hello beautiful people.
I. My Story
II. Panic Attacks
III. Emotions (and Cannabis)
Most of you now the common story:
“I used to smoke on regular basis/day in-day out for … years. Man, I loved it. But then
I got this mad panic attack and still then I can’t smoke anymore. Or worse, since then I feel different, have anxiety problems, etc.”
[ I. ] Yeah, I was one of the latter. I also used to be a happy daily chuffer for about a year.
And I was so glad about it. It gave me so many insights, yes, combined with high existence it made me a whole other person. But a few weeks ago it happened. Me and a friend where visiting another friend in Vienna, we sat together joking and talking about music, one beer, a few puffs of a nice dooby. And instantly it happened. Pure horror. Sweaty hands. This ear-battering peep. My mind turned inside. 1000 thoughts in one second. Now you got it. This was the tip-of-the-iceberg-joint which pushed you into [insert any super bad mental disease here] forever. I fucked up my whole life.
The next few days where all the same. I truly believed I was going crazy. I wasn’t able to focus on conversations with my friends. I wasn’t able to calm down. I analyzed everything.
I heard every little sound, especially those high metallic ones that weren’t there before.
I felt every little change in my body. I felt my brain twisting inwards sometimes. And I was
totally sure that this is the beginning of Schizophrenia/Psychosis… It was a ticking time bomb. It could break out at any given time and destroy my life forever.
Since then it got a little better but I still had this feeling that something had changed dramatically from this point on. Sometimes I would feel perfectly normal, which was a huge relief. Short term. Then I could sit in class and just feel like I’m dreaming. I felt so disconnected to who I have been, to my classmates, my surroundings.
I googled a lot and diagnosed myself with nearly anything.
When I wasn’t schizo then it had to be OCD. When it wasn’t OCD it was depersonalisation.
After reading the Power of Now from Eckhart Tolle (amazing book btw if you’re in a normal live situation) I even made up theories that marijuana gave me some enlightenment, where I was super aware of the moment, but I weren’t able to cope with yet.
But do you wanna now what it was?
[ II. ] A completely standard panic attack.
Those things happen. They’re not pleasant. Hell, they are some of the worst things
I ever experienced. But they occur. If you’re in a similar situation I can’t recommend that enough: INFORM YOURSELF!
Read a book about it. Or two. But don’t get caught up in believing that there is more to it than a simple fight or flight response. All those reactions that happen within your body are supposed to save your life in case of getting attacked by a lion while chilling in your cave.
Your body doesn’t hurt itself nor does it hurt your mind. You’re fine.
Everything after that falls into the category of post-traumatic stress. Something unpleasant happened. You don’t want it to happen again. So you become hypersensitive. You become alert. Also those reactions are perfectly normal and healthy. But let it go. There was nothing to be afraid of in the first place. No reason to stay cautious.
So why me? And why at this particular moment?
I was chilling. Everything was fine.
[ III. ] This is because the reason for panic attacks are not to be found in the near past.
Nearly every panic attack is a product of suppressed emotions from a timespan as far as 9 months before it occured. Think about it. What has been happening in your life.
Conflicts? Break Ups? Loss? Did you move to another city? Think about everything. Positive and negative events.
Most important question? Did you process those events emotionally?
For me the problem was that I smoked nearly every emotion away. I was not just addicted to weed. I was addicted to feeling good. I always thought I got some kind of enlightenment.
But in reality I was just fleeing from my negative emotions. I hid my doubts and worries while I have been in my realtionship. I didn’t grieve after I have broken up with my girlfriend. I had this perfectionistic attitude and I wanted to measure up with that idealistic enlightened me.
And nowadays I think that you can’t really connect with your emotions when you’re high all day long. This may also be the cause for the massive correlation between excessive pot consume and panic attacks. Not to forget that pot itself can be a trigger.
And unability to quit an addiction is also a stress factor. Atleast it was for me.
It took me a while to understand that google up “Will I ever be able to smoke again after this panic attack?” was not the answer, but part of the question.
Thank you for reading. I hope I was able to help some of those who found themselves in similar situations.
Maybe another correlation between weed and suppressed emotions could be that cannabis use shortens your REM periods. So if you smoke a lot, and especially before bed time it can lead to fewer dreams. And as we know dreams play a very important role in processing emotions. But this hasn’t any scientific evidence. I’m just putting thoughts out there.
When it comes down to it: every bad experience has something to teach you.
Really cool that you decided to share this with people who might be in the same situation.
Even away from the pot-addiction/panic-attack field, I could take a lesson from it, to always process my emotions and not shove them away.
I noticed this effect quite early on in my experimenting days. To avoid, always use in ritual/spiritual type setting with the intention of finding and releasing emotions. It is a great tool for that, if you do not get sidetracked in the 3rd dimensional perceptions.